Epilogue: Life, Which Imitates Dreams
Kagome awoke with a feeling of panic.
There was a demon and he had a sword… and he had been trying to kill her…
And then her brain caught up with her body and she realized that she was lying on the couch in her living room with no crazy, albeit gorgeous, demons in sight.
For a moment Kagome was thoroughly confused. And then everything came rushing back to her and she pressed a hand to her heart.
A dream? Could it have all been just a dream?
She cast a glance at the TV where the credits of the movie Labyrinth were rolling and she frowned.
It had been less than two hours since her fight with Souta. So then it must have been a dream…
Except that it had felt so real, and, all evidence to the contrary, Kagome still had a terrifying suspicion that if she looked upstairs she would find Souta missing.
Kagome jerked upright and pounded up the stairs. She yanked open the door to Souta's room and nearly sobbed with relief when she saw his unruly dark hair sticking out from under the covers. Heedless of the fact that he was sleeping she flung herself to the bed and pounced on him, hugging him closely.
"Kagome?" he asked sleepily, pulling back to rub his eyes, "what is wrong with you?"
"I'm so sorry Souta!" she sobbed, clinging to him and he awkwardly placed his arms around her, staring down at the top of her head in confusion. "I didn't mean it, I'm so sorry!"
"It's okay, sis. I know you didn't mean any of it. You were just mad at mom." Souta was more than a little confused, but he knew sisters could get very emotional. He had learned something in eleven years of living with one after all.
"I know," she was still crying, "and I'm so sorry. I love you Souta. Don't ever leave me!"
"Uhhh…" now he was seriously worried about her mental health, "okay Kagome. I won't leave you. But… you know, someday we might decide to get married or something – to other people, you know – and you might not want me hanging around on your honeymoon…"
"This isn't funny Souta!"
Souta pulled back and studied her seriously. "Okay sis, I love you too. And I won't leave, I promise." He patted her hand lightly, "But… maybe you should get some rest now." He offered.
Kagome sniffed and shook her head.
"In a little bit, I need to clean up downstairs before mom gets home."
"Okay," Souta shrugged and snuggled back down into his covers. "Goodnight sis."
By the time Kagome had the dishes put away and the living room straightened up she was fairly convinced that she really had been dreaming. After all, Souta didn't seem to remember any of it, and it was obviously still the same night. She had just fallen asleep on the couch while watching the movie. Her guilt and turbulent emotions, coupled with the strikingly similar event at the start of the movie had caused her to dream that she was in a similar situation.
There were no such things as demons and hanyous and homicidal Labyrinths. There weren't lecherous monks with holes in their hands, or demon slayers with pet fire cats, or tiny fox kits with human faces and magic powers. Kagome was practically an adult, she knew better.
And now that she had convinced herself of that she was starting to feel a little silly, and a lot safer.
That would teach her to get all worked up after eating a bowl of cheetos and cheese nips.
Kagome brushed her teeth and headed for her room, pushing back her bangs wearily as she entered her bedroom and closed the door behind her. She fumbled for the light switch, her eyelids heavy – maybe she needed more sleep? It was kind of late…
The light flipped on and Kagome's heart caught in her throat.
There, sitting cross legged in the middle of her bed was a man in red clothing with silver hair and golden eyes and puppy ears twitching atop his head.
"Oy, wench, what took you so long?" he groused.
Kagome blinked at him and he cocked his head watching her curiously.
Kagome remembered to breathe again. She took a slow, dazed step forward.
And then she launched herself into his arms and clung to him, sobbing into his shirt.
It hadn't been a dream, it had been real. And it had been terrifying, except that it hadn't all been terrifying. Some of it had been wonderful, and she had made such good friends. And Inuyasha was here which meant that they were all free. And he had protected her and he loved her, and he'd come back to find her, and no one had ever done anything like that for her. And it would be so, so, so, easy to love him, because she already cared about him so much even though she didn't really understand why. But she didn't have too, because he was here, and she had all the time she needed to figure it out.
He had wrapped his arms around her and his face was buried in her hair. He breathed in deeply, loving the scent of her and the way it warmed him.
"Miss me?" he asked, and she could hear just a hint of a smile in his voice.
She pulled back, "I thought it was a dream; I thought I'd never see you again."
"Keh," he snorted, brushing her hair gently from her face and tucking it behind her ear, "can't get rid of me that easily. I'm free now, and I don't ever intend to let you out of my sight again." He stopped and looked away, suddenly shy. "That is, if you'll let me." He amended.
Kagome grinned. "I don't know," she teased, "you did put me through an awful lot."
He looked chagrinned, "I know. And I had no right. I'm sorry."
"Mm hmm." Kagome pulled away and placed a finger to her chin, pretending to think. "I think you should make it up to me."
"What do you want?" his eagerness almost made her feel ashamed to be teasing him like this. "I'll do anything."
"Anything?" her smile widened when he nodded; she leaned forward and lifted his chin, her eyes sparkling. "Will you sing 'Frere Jaque' for me?"
Inuyasha's ear twitched. He didn't know what 'Frere Jaque' was, but he knew that look. "Oy, are you playing games with me, Kagome?" he asked with just a touch of irritation.
She smiled, "Maybe."
He growled playfully, "better watch it." His ears twitched again as she laughed and he saw her eyes train on them. Slowly her hand reached out and gave one ear a tentative caress. Inuyasha leaned into the contact, his eyes drifting closed, a low growl evidencing his enjoyment. Kagome blushed but rubbed the ear once more. It was so soft.
"I'm sorry Inuyasha, I shouldn't have teased you like that." And she shouldn't have. She knew he felt bad enough. Reluctantly she lowered her hand and then her breath caught as Inuyasha snagged it in mid air and drew it to his chest.
"I forgive you, Kagome." He smiled, "but you can make it up to me."
Her eyes widened as he gave her hand a tug causing her to fall against him. His face was hovering over hers and he was staring at her lips. "Like this." He whispered, and then he was claiming her mouth with his own, kissing her tenderly and fiercely all at once, his hand tangling in her hair, his body pressed to hers. And Kagome thought that she could get used to this.
But it might take her the rest of their lives…
A/N: Well, I hear the dividers are working fine... but they still won't work for me. Anyway, it is the end, it is happy, and I even worked in a kiss (finally!) GO ME! I hope you enjoyed reading this as much as I enjoyed writing it, and no there won't be a sequel so don't ask. I'm not really into sequels much. Too many new ideas demanding attention. In fact, I really need to finish the Cardcaptor story I've been working on for two years. I really like it, and I want it to see the light of day sometime, even if no one else cares about CCS anymore... Send me a parting review. I love you all!